Ordo Templi Orientis in Italy

Ordo Templi Orientis Variations in Italy
Roberto Negrini
Nevio Viola
Paolo Fogagnolo
Corrente 93
Giuseppe Ierace

Peter-R. Koenig

Part of the following information on the Italian scene is a compilation from letters of Massimo Introvigne.
Signor Introvigne is Director of the 'Centre for Studies on New Religions' (CESNUR) in Turin. [1] His approach has given him unprecedented access to many of the protagonists in the field of 'new religions'. [2] He organises yearly conferences on an international level, at which academics from the whole world make appearences and give lectures. [3] In 1990, Signor Introvigne published his book "Il Cappello del Mago" through a Milanese press, [4] in which he quoted from the present author's articles on the O.T.O. in "Nuit-Isis" magazine, and a draft version of the present work, on various pages. As a result he was proposed as an "Honorary Member" of the 'Caliphate', an offer which not surprisingly, he rejected. The sequel to his first boook was called "Il ritorno dello gnosticismo", and was published at Varese in 1993.

Below article was published in 1994. For details on the events between 1994 and 2000, see: Der O.T.O. Phänomen RELOAD.

Massimo Introvigne:

In 1978 Michael Paul Bertiaux sent a Charter to Nevio Viola, "Solomon Phallos-Naaos-Lucifer I" who lived in Trieste [further details below]. Viola then organised the O.T.O., and an outer circle, which he dubbed 'Corrente 93 - Societá Pansophia per la Nuova Era' [this organisation had nothing to do with Heinrich Tränker's Pansophy]. In 1982 the Spaniard Manuel C. Lamparter "Tau Baphomet X°" appointed Viola as representative for the OTOA in Italy, since Bertiaux's Charter only covered the O.T.O. In 1983 [1988?] following health problems, Viola made Roberto Negrini "Moloch-Solomon-Phallos-Naaos-Lucifer II" his successor in the O.T.O., OTOA, Ecclesia Gnostica Catholica (Latina), Astrum Argenteum, 'La Couleuvre Noire', Illuminati d'Italia and Fraternitas Rosicruciana Antiqua [?], while the Rite of Memphis-Misraim was first chartered to Negrini on 25.9.1988. Negrini is a remarkable personality; under the "alias" of "Roberto Lotario di Chiaravalle" he conducted two sex-magic rituals in public on 10.10.1989 - on Italian television's Canale 5. However, 'Corrente 93' suffered an increasing number of schisms. Viola wanted to win back Negrini's position for himself, while Negrini saw his 1988 Charter as irreversible; Bertiaux chose to keep well out of all these disputes.

'Corrente 93' now being defunct, some of its members in Trieste decided to transfer their loyalties to one 'Frank G. Ripel' (Mr. Perilli), who led the 'Associazione Orion' amongst others, and wrote explicitly about sex-magic (Ripel in an Email dated 8 January 2002 to P.R. Koenig: "If you do not provide, within seven days, to cancel the phrase: "Corrent 93' now being defunct, some of its members in Trieste decided to transfer their loyalties to one 'Frank G. Ripel'...") I'll declare and will write that you are a guy that, consciously, propagate false informations on my person...a mystifier!"); in southern Italy he worked with the 'Societa Psicofísica di Studi Metapsichici' under Giuseppe Ierace, a neurologist. (Ripel in an Email dated 8 January 2002 to P.R. Koenig: "If you do not provide to correct or to cancel the phrase: "in southern Italy he worked with the 'Societ… Psicofisica di Studi Metapsichici' under Giuseppe Ierace, a neurologist." within seven days, I'll declare and will write that you are a guy that, consciously, spreads false informations on my person...a mystifier.").

Negrini continued the O.T.O. and OTOA with over a hundred members, but his attacks on the Catholic church and his habit of quoting Nietzsche and Hitler caused many of them to resign... No notice is taken of the 'Caliphate' in Italy; here people identify exclusively with Negrini, Crowley, and the O.T.O. The 'Caliphate' yet again threatened to take legal steps.

The most recent gossip is that Bertiaux has expelled Negrini from the O.T.O. and OTOA (because of the row over his TV antics).

So far as the F.R.A. is concerned, there are two groups in Italy. One is led by Negrini in Bologna, who claimed to have received the F.R.A. from Bertiaux and Lamparter (if the dispute between Viola and Negrini had in fact continued, presumably both groups would have been annexed) [Bertiaux is definitely not associated with the business of FRA Charters]. The other group calls itself the 'Grupo Prometeo-Agape', and is run by Paolo Fogagnolo in Milan; he was a former member of an Italian terrorist group (Lo Muscio Brigade) (but refused by the Red Brigades terrorists), and had been converted to occultism in prison. Fogagnolo had a Charter from the Colombian Gabriel Ramirez Cifuentes.

The authority of H.J. Metzger and Ana Delia González is rejected; instead a link was maintained with Swinburne Clymer's Rosicrucians in Panama... Moreover, Fogagnolo was the cause of an immense rumpus in the Italian esoteric scene, when he publicised the sex-magical rituals of Giuliano Kremmerz in 1988. Apparently to susidise the exhorbitant legal and lawyer's fees for his court case, Fogagnolo always sold his Centro Agape's publications at the highest prices. Besides this, Fogagnolo also owned a back-dated OTOA Charter from Lamparter.

Negrini laid claim to the Gnostic and Illuminati succession of Bertiaux (who appears to have initiated Nevio Viola through the post, and later Negrini), as well as that of Lamparter.

Viola now retained the Italian branch of the OTOA under the ægis of Courtney Willis and Lamparter. Negrini, who was planning something called a 'Draconian Academy', kept the O.T.O. (but not the OTOA), together with 'La Couleuvre Noire' and the Bertiaux-succession to the Gnostic Church, which he Christianised as the 'Ecclesia Gnostica Sideralis' - meanwhile Fogagnolo was able to maintain good relationships with both the other camps, and kept the F.R.A.

Negrini accepted the "Book of the Law", Viola only partially. The 'Caliphate' did not recognise any of these people as 'true' O.T.O. members. For a long time, Viola sought to develop the O.T.O. as a pre-Crowleyan organisation, and to that end allegedly being granted a Charter from Bertiaux's European representative, and inaugurating contact with Metzger.

    End of Massimo Introvigne's contribution in 1990.

Additions to Signor Introvigne's Account [5]

The aforementioned Giuseppe Ierace "Sokaris Palladius Merlin 777" (Order journal "Sixtrum") tried over the course of time to make contact with every possible organisation, so that he could at least put their titles on his headed notepaper. In 1986 his O.T.O., the 'Mysteria Mystica Mediterranea', drew up a "Charter of Friendness and Co-operation" for the Ordo Saturni. On 12.11.1986 his intricate Charter was ornamented with: "Mysteria Mystica Mediterranea, Societas Psychosophica in Italia + Fraternitas Sive Ordo Saturni + Italicus Typhonianus Ordo + ...Memphis e Misraim... AASSR, OTO, Societas Rosicruciana Antiqua, Ordine degli Illuminati e dell'Ekklesia Gnostica Spiritualis", and Ierace signed it as the "Calabrian Caliphate." [6]

Giuseppe Jerace Ordo Saturni

[From: Der O.T.O.A-Reader.]

Nevio Viola

30.9.1978: Bertiaux made Viola an XI°, which (or so Bertiaux said) was equivalent to the Diaconate of the Ecclesia Gnostica Spiritualis.


[From: Materialien zum O.T.O.]

1978-11-24 Michael Paul Bertiaux Ken Ward Nevio Viola Zivorad Mihajlovic Slavinski

[From: Der O.T.O.A-Reader.]

On 1.1.1979 Viola received a book signed by Bertiaux, in which he was addressed as 33°, 90° and 97°. On 11.5.82 Viola stated to follow Lamparter. Now imaginary Illuminati and other Gnostic titles came into play.

1982.03.02 Nevio Viola Manuel Cabrera Lamparter

1982-03-02 Manuel Cabrera Lamparter Nevio Viola

1982-06-07 Manuel Cabrera Lamparter Nevio Viola

[From: Der O.T.O.A-Reader.]

7.6.1982: Lamparter recognised Viola (still in 'Corrente 93') as I°, X°, and XVI° of the OTOA in Italy, [7] even though Lamparter possessed no authority for this. In this year Lamparter formed alliances with W.W. Webb, Kenneth Grant, and Zivorad Mihajlovic Slavinski in Yugoslavia.

1983-02-28 Nevio Viola Manuel Cabrera Lamparter

1983-03-21 Nevio Viola

[From: Der O.T.O.A-Reader.]

On 21.3.88 various Gnostic titles were transferred by Viola to Lamparter. There was even an undated X° [!] title that went to Spain from Viola's fertile imagination.

4.9.1983: Viola bestowed the dignities of the X° (O.T.O.) and XVI° (OTOA) on Roberto Negrini (also known as Robert Klartal).

25.9.1988: Viola made Negrini his successor. The list of his titles alone took up four A4 pages!

1988-09-25 Nevio Viola Lotario Roberto Negrini

[From: Der O.T.O.A-Reader.]

9.10.1988: Negrini exposed the above-mentioned [?] Charter as worthless.

3.3.1989: Bertiaux accepted Negrini as Viola's successor.

Michael Bertiaux Lotario Roberto Negrini Nevio Viola

[From: Materialien zum O.T.O.]

8.9.1989: Viola's OTOA was recognised by Courtney Willis:

1989-09-08 Courtney Willis Nevio Viola

[From: Der O.T.O.A-Reader.]

But "I never issued a charter to Mr Negrini... Nevio Viola is my true rep. in Italy" (Bertiaux on February 4th 1990).
"I wrote him... that he [Negrini] was not an OTOA member" (Lamparter on 25.2.90).

On 1.11.89 Lotario Roberto Negrini di Chiaravallo founded his 'Akkademia Pan-Sophica Alpha Draconis'. [8]

Viola died in April 1993. Negrini took over his inheritance.

    Read the Re-Collection of an involved party.

Paolo Fogagnolo "Salamina, Prometeus"

1985-08-16 Manuel Cabrera Lamparter Paolo Fogagnolo

[From: Der O.T.O.A-Reader.]

16.8.1985: Permission from Lamparter to found OTOA Lodges.

3.9.1986: Initiation into the Athens 'Chevaliers du Christ' Martinist Lodge, by Tr. Kotzamanis "Hieronymus". (Nothing to do with the 'Hieronymus' in FUDOESI, Émile Dantienne).

20.3.1989: Under the motto of 'Sar Voluntas Divina', Fogagnolo was nominated as a 'Supérieur Inconnu' in Sar Hieronymus's Athenian Martinist Lodge.

4.5.1989: Admission to the 'Chevaliers du Christ'/'Loge des Chevaliers Verts' Martinist Lodge in Brussels. The resultant Charter was adorned with an O.T.O. Lamen, and signed by Armand Toussaint "Raymond Panagion".

6.5.1989: Ramirez Cifuentes from Colombia appointed Fogagnolo (now calling himself 'Ar-Thon') as the representative for, and Grand Master of, the OTOA in Italy. Two undated documents from Viola made Ramirez IX° and agent of the OTOA.

After this, Ramirez Cifuentes made Fogagnolo the Italian Patriarch of the Krumm-Heller Church [of which Ramirez Cifuentes was only a Deacon].

4.11.1990: Fogagnolo became national Italian Grand Master of the 'Orient Universel des Rites Traditionnels' through Kotzamanis, who was now also functioning as the Greek branch of Memphis-Misraim - from which Fogagnolo received on the same day, the 33°, 90°, 95°, and the higher 90°, 95° 96° [!] and the 33°.

Ramirez Cifuentes then furnished Fogagnolo with the three lowest F.R.A. degrees, and made him a bishop by post. Fogagnolo appointed Ramirez to the 90° and 95° on 21.3.90.

18.1.1991: Fogagnolo became a bishop in the Church of Antioch, through the laying-on of hands by the aforementioned 'Hieronymus'. In the spring of 1991 Lamparter back-dated a Charter to June 26th 1989, and made Fogagnolo 33°, 90°, 96° (from which Lamparter got the MM 90° and 95° degrees for himself in autumn 1991!).

Gabriel Ramirez Cifuentes Paolo Fogagnolo Fraternitas Rosicruciana Antiqua Manuel Lamparter Paolo Fogagnolo Gabriel Ramirez Cifuentes Paolo Fogagnolo Fraternitas Rosicruciana Antiqua Gabriel Ramirez Cifuentes Paolo Fogagnolo Fraternitas Rosicruciana Antiqua

Groupe de Thèbes.

Paris en Printemps

"At the end of the 1970's, a certain Bernard Fréon-Montenay created in Paris the Ordo Argenteum Astrum, the QBLH group, the Fraternité Hermetique du Dragon Lunaire, as well as an OTO Lodge. At first he tried to get recognition out of the Caliphate OTO, and then had pretensions to a link with the OTO Antiqua [in 1983]. Later it seems that this group became the Ordre des Anges de l'Apocalypse.' [9]

To this William Wallace Webb, head of the QBL Alchemist Church, and his own Argenteum Astrum stated: "In regard Bernard Fréon. In 1980 he wrote me... then I did not hear from him until 1988... he had gone out of his mind... (he was Nuts)." [10] In any case, Motta had named Fréon in his roll of dishonour. [11]

Fogagnolo in Italy kept up a relationship with the French Order-enthusiast and collector Christian Bouchet, a member of the French section of the 'Caliphate'. Bouchet had received an MM Charter from Lamparter on June 24th 1991, which was apparently intended to "Fuck the Caliphate" in copyright matters. Consequently Bouchet now proclaimed the National French Grand Lodge of the Krumm-Hellerian O.T.O., disregarding the fact that his Charter from Lamparter was wholly inadequate for this purpose, as it conferred no O.T.O. titles.

As Lamparter had first got hold of the Memphis-Misraim degrees in the autumn of 1991, the MM degrees Bouchet provided him with were null and void. Bouchet also seems to have been mixed up in the murky world of neo-fascism; on October 1st 1991 he was expelled from the far-right 'Troisième Voie' ['Third Way'] political movement by Jean-Gilles Malliarakis. [12] Afterwards he founded the 'Nouvelles Résistances' political organisation in Nantes. [13]

Bouchet's friend Remi Boyer (allegedly an adviser to the French Ministry of Justice) [14] founded a group called the 'Cercle d'Alexandrie', which dedicated itself not [for once] to ritual practices, but to theoretical studies, such as forming a collection. It is not entirely clear whether this organisation was identical with a so-called 'Thebe Group' [Groupe de Thèbes], although the same members appear in both.

Among the motley crew who made up this circle, there could be found not only 'serious' researchers, like Serge Caillet (of Memphis-Misraim) or Robert Amadou (priest in the Église Syrienne, and a frequent guest of the weightier Freemasons in Zurich), but also such illustrious personages as the elixir of life merchant Jean-Pierre Giudicelli de Cressac Bachelerie (of Memphis-Misraim in Nice), [15] or Jean-Pascal Ruggiu (of the 'Golden Dawn' in Paris!), [16] and so forth. At one stage, Boyer apparently tried to obtain an F.R.A. Charter.

In the autumn of 1991 Fogagnolo severed his links with the Frenchmen, since as a radical left-winger he found these gentlemen to be "fascistoid". Fogagnolo's 'Agape-Prometeo' group was involved in the "revolutionary political fight for Spiritual communism." [17] Even so the Buddhist Master Namkhai Norbu, who was recognised by the Dalai Lama, frequented Fogagnolo's group. [18]
    Correction in the above mentioned Re-Collection of an involved party.

Boyer rejected the accusation of "fascistoid" activity, and countered that anyway Fogagnolo's F.R.A. Charter had been conferred under the condition that it was worked according to the Marxist and revolutionary line of the Italian Agape group. [19] At all events, Lamparter had had quite enough of the French, and broke off all contact "as I am very disappointed with occultists, esoterists, orders and fraternities, the most of them being lunatic, dogmatic, swindlers, paranoiac, egoistic, ignorant, etc." [20]

In 1992 Courtney Willis of the American OTOA engendered disputes in Europe, since he refused to recognise a number of Bertiaux's Charters. Though Bertiaux was his chief, he stayed silent.

Julijan Naskov ran the OTOA and 'Couleuvre Noire' in Yugoslavia. There were strained relationships with Zihorad Mihajlovic who had been personally initiated by Bertiaux. On February 22nd 1990 Israel Regardie (Crowley's erstwhile secretary) referred Naskov to the O.T.O.'s "European representative" - "Our good friend" Hermann Joseph Metzger, no less. Naskov visited Metzger in Switzerland but when Naskov dropped the name of Marcelo Ramos Motta, Metzger rudely chased him away.

==> Many related documents can be found in the F.R.A. gallery.

Notes to Chapter Eighteen of "Das O.T.O. Phänomen", 1994

  1. The author also gave several lectures at CESNUR conferences.
  2. Reader's letter in "AHA" April 1992, p. 76.
  3. For instance, the present study's author lectured on the Ordo Saturni in London in March 1993, and on Krumm-Heller at Recife in Brazil in May 1994; also in Rome, at Cefalu and ...
  4. Published in French as "La Magie", Paris 1993.
  5. Primary sources not referenced.
  6. This Charter may be studied along with many other such documents in "Materialien zum OTO".
  7. "Instrumentum" Vol. VI Nº 2, p. 5.
  8. "Daimon" Nº 0 dated 21.3.90, p. 7.
  9. Christian Bouchet, letter of 29.7.89.
  10. Webb, letter of 10.11.89.
  11. Motta: "Sex and Religion", Nashville 1981, p. xiv.
  12. "Mise au Point", circular dated 21.9.91.
  13. "Vouloir" Nº 94-96, 1992. Bouchet wrote of a political conference in London, and also about Crowley, pp. 22 & 30.
  14. Boyer, letter of 30.11.91.
  15. Letters of 22.7. and 9.9.91.
  16. "Mages & Magies" Nº 0, France 1991, p. 13.
  17. Letter to the editors of "AHA" of 6.5.92, unpublished.
  18. "Ascesi" Nº 1 p. 15, and Nº 2 p. 29. Political and further new-age associations in "Ascesi" Nº 5.
  19. Letter of 30.11.91. Other members were Francesca Gargano and Enrica Ferrari.
  20. Lamparter, letter of 13.1.92.

Translated and adapted from a chapter on the O.T.O. Protagonists in "Das O.T.O.-Phänomen" (1994) by Mark Parry-MaddocksGerman original online.
More on the Italian O.T.O. Scene in "Der OTOA-Reader" (1994).
To the other chapters of the English online version of "The O.T.O. Phenomenon" book of 1994.

Traduzioni italiane

Aleister Crowley: Biografia.
Spermo-Gnosis – Magia sessuale.
Il feticcio, l’auto-induzione, lo stigma, il gioco di ruolo.
La versione play-game di un O.T.O.-Fatamorgana.
Ordo Templi Orientis — I primi anni e la sua evoluzione.
Breve storia dell'Ordo Templi Orientis.
In latino: De destillatione "suci mulieris" ad servandam valetudinem magi e GOTOS busto in Italia.
Considerare l'O.T.O. inesistente.
In english: Ordo Templi Orientis in Italy.
Aleister Crowley: un mago a Cefalù.
Marco Pasi: Aleister Crowley e la tentazione della politica.
Marco Pasi: Lo yoga in Aleister Crowley.

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More about all this in: Andreas Huettl and Peter-R. Koenig: Satan - Jünger, Jäger und Justiz

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